The world’s leading sustainable seafood ecolabel, the Marine Stewardship Council (MSC), has increased its Ocean Stewardship Fund to around £2 million, by redirecting a proportion of funds from the sales of products with the blue fish label into research and projects aimed at ending overfishing.
With world leaders convening this week in Oslo for Our Oceans 2019, the MSC is increasing its commitment to global action to end overfishing.
The Ocean Stewardship Fund, announced at last year’s Our Oceans summit, will receive an additional 5% of annual royalties earned from the sale of MSC-labelled products.
This ongoing commitment increases its value by around £950,000 per year, in addition to the £1 million seed funding announced in 2018.
The Fund is now open to applications for research and work that will accelerate and contribute to sustainable fishing practices around the world, particularly in the Global South.
It also aims to support fisheries that are either on their journey to become sustainable or maintaining their sustainable practices.
The deadline for submitting applications is 15 December 2019.
MSC chief executive, Rupert Howes, said, "We’ve seen incredible progress in sustainable fishing, particularly in the Northern hemisphere. Yet the rate of overfishing continues to increase at an alarming rate, particularly in the Global South.
"The MSC is committed to doing more to empower scientists, fisheries, businesses and governments in a collective effort to safeguard oceans and seafood supplies. That’s why we’re going beyond the commitments made last year."
In 2018, the United Nations estimated that a third of the world’s fish stocks have now been exploited beyond sustainable limits – up from a tenth in 1974.
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